The Arkansas Driver's License Study Guide (July, 2005 edition, still the current one) is a little fuzzy about the yellow line business, and I find that as a rule, Arkansas motorists never read this stuff after they've passed the age of 16 (14 in my year group) and gotten their driver's license... and they almost universally ignore this thing about solid yellow lines if they feel they may have to slow down a little. But here's what the Study Guide currently says:
Lines and symbols marked on the roadway divide lanes, indicate to a driver when it is safe to pass other vehicles or change lanes, which lanes to use for turns, where a driver must stop for signs or traffic signals, and define pedestrian walkways.
Edge and Lane Lines
Solid lines along the side of the road indicate for the driver where the edge of the road is located. Lines separating lanes of traffic moving in the same direction are white. Lines separating lanes of traffic moving in opposite directions are yellow.
White Lane Markings
A dashed white line between lanes of traffic indicates a driver may cross the line to change lanes if it is safe to do so. A solid white line between lanes of traffic means that a driver should stay within the lane unless a special situation requires the driver to change lanes.
Yellow Lane Markings
A broken yellow line between opposing lanes of traffic indicate a driver may cross to pass if there is no opposing traffic. Where both a solid and broken line exits between opposing lanes, a driver may pass if conditions are safe and there is no opposing traffic. Two solid lines between opposing lanes of traffic indicate neither lanes of traffic may pass. A driver may cross a solid yellow line to turn into a driveway if there is no opposing traffic approaching the planned turn site. (What's missing here is the explanation that it the solid yellow line is on your side of the center dividing line, you can't pass, though traffic from the opposite direction may pass if the line on their side is dashed.)
Other Lane Controls
Shared Center Lane:
Shared center lanes are reserved for making left turns and can be used by vehicles traveling in either direction. Marked on the pavement, left turn arrows for traffic in one direction alternate with left turn arrows for traffic approaching from the opposing direction. These lanes are marked on each side by solid yellow and dashed yellow lines. In Arkansas it is permissible for a vehicle making a left turn from an intersecting street or driveway to utilize a center left turn lane as part of the maneuver to gain access or merge into traffic lanes, except that it is not permissible to use the center left turn lane as an acceleration lane.
Passing: Drivers passing a vehicle traveling in the same direction must yield to that vehicle, even if the vehicle is slowing or coming to a stop, because the vehicle may be about to turn left or may be approaching a hazard the overtaking driver does not see.
As noted, the Arkansas Code and the Driver's Manual aren't real specific about what constitutes a no-passing zone. In cases where the State statutes don't spell it out specifically, the law tells you to go look it up in the manual for uniform traffic control devices adopted by the Highway Commission. So here's what the MUTCD -- and ultimately the Arkansas traffic rules -- have to say about lane marking for "no passing":
A BROKEN (dashed) yellow centerline on the left side of a travel lane indicates passing is allowed in that direction.
A SOLID yellow centerline on the left side of a travel lane indicates passing is prohibited in that direction.
A centerline might not be in the physical center of the road.
Sure, cyclists are sometime slower than motor traffic. But if that slow-moving vehicle were a tractor or other farm vehicle, or a horse & buggy, or some little old blue-haired granny lady in her Model A Ford, you'd have to slow and legally pass in just the same way. In another forgotten statute, the law reminds us that speed limits are the maximum allowable safe speed on a particular stretch of roadway, not the minimum speed.
And, of course in Arkansas, if a motorist is passing a cyclist, he has to maintain at least a 3-foot space in passing, per the new 2007 law...
Speed kills. All you have to do is read several of the entries in the Arkansas State Police log for traffic fatalities (http://www.asp.state.ar.us/fatal/ind...inks&year=2008 ) and find that the number one Killer of motorists, cagers and motorcyclists alike, is an inability to stay within their lane lines, for whatever reason.